Saturday, 28 January 2017

Cape of Good Hope (Pohutukawa, the unofficial New Zealand Christmas tree)

We waited until midday on Friday before setting off for Warwick.  We were rather hoping a boat would come through and break up the worst of the ice for us so we would have a clear passage but no such luck.  Anyway it was nice and sunny all morning and the ice wasn’t really thick enough to cause much damage.

Ironically just after setting off, we saw a boat coming towards us.  As it happened it was Craig and Sarah who were moving from Warwick to Leamington so it meant I could just follow his channel all the way to Warwick.  We haven’t seen them for a few months and the boat was looking really good – they have been doing it up over the last year.  They have named their boat after what is commonly known as the New Zealand Christmas tree. 

Craig heading towards us on Pohutukawa

We stopped just below the Cape locks and had lunch whilst we filled up with water.  When I was in the cratch sorting out the hosepipe I noticed we have a lot of excess wiring still.  It’s funny how you get used to things as I haven’t been aware of it for weeks.  My son Steve is visiting next weekend and as he is an electrician I need to add a ‘tidy up cables’ task to his job list.

Looking through the wires to the bottom lock at Cape whilst taking on water

Karen enjoying locking as usual- Cape top lock can be seen in the background

We last came up these locks in November and I remember that it was just me and Buddy and it was absolutely pouring with rain – poor old Buddy was sheltering under every balance beam.  

We moored up above the top lock and walked back to Leamington to get the car.  As we set out it started raining so we were a bit wet by the time we got there. 

Our mooring for friday night - Cape top lock can be seen in the background and the Cape of Good Hope pub is just out of sight to the right of the lock

We got back to Lidl, where we had been moored, and realised Craig had taken our mooring there and he was outside cutting up wood so we stopped for a chat.  It transpired that we had also taken their mooring up at Cape.  He and Sarah have lived on the boat since returning from living in New Zealand a few years ago and they have had two children since moving aboard.  I noticed that he now had two stoves; one at each end of the boat so thought he must keep warm having to cut up twice the amount of wood.  

It was good to get home, especially as the rain hadn’t been forecast until later in the night.  An advantage of the rain coming earlier than originally forecast, was that it now looks like being dry on Saturday.  This is good news as Mike and Lesley are coming over for a cruise.

After this weekend our approach to cruising will change for a few months.  Although we are moving to areas that we have cruised through before it was when Karen hadn’t gone back to work so we didn’t have a car to worry about.  From now on I am going to have to make sure we move to places where the car can be easily accessible.  This is partly done from memory from when we went through the places before but I also use Google Earth to check out likely bridges to see if they have parking places nearby.

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